Subtype Report: Chronic Lymphocytic Leukaemia
Chronic lymphocytic leukaemia (CLL) is an incurable lymphoma found in the lymphocytes. The progression of CLL is extremely variable ranging from indolent disease not requiring treatment to one that progresses rapidly and is resistant to treatment. The average incidence of CLL varies between individuals in different geographic regions with incidence being lower in eastern Asia and slightly higher in Europe and the USA. Median age at diagnosis is 72 years.
Within CLL, there are two main subsets which are distinguished by whether the CLL cells express as unmutated or mutated immunoglobulin heavy-chain variable region gene (IGHV). Patients with CLL that expresses an unmutated IGHV usually have more aggressive disease than those that express a mutated IGHV.
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